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Reltio Master Data Management Match Rules - FAQ's Part 1

By Joel Snipes posted 05-09-2021 10:03

Reltio Master Data Management Match Rules - FAQ's Part 1

As a Senior Technical Consultant, I get asked a lot of the same questions over and over. In this blog, of two, I will focus on FAQ’s around Matching Rules. 

Survivorship and Match Rules are tightly coupled in terms of their actual use, but for this blog post, I will focus on Match Rules and return to survivorship later. Let us start with some easy questions about how they are implemented.

Q: Are Match Rules created through the UI or in the L3 config?

A: You can design them in the UI as of a few releases ago. There is a wizard that will help you design basic match rules, and for more complex rules you can edit the JSON directly from the UI. 
Creating Reltio Match Rules through UI
Q: If we make a Match Rule change right now in the UI, should we be extracting the config and storing it for source control? For example, we have made a Match Rule change in the UI. If I take my current config that does not include it, and I make this change to the config through Postman and JSON, would I blow away that Match Rule?

A: You could easily override it if you did it; It is just modifying that L3 for you. After you make a match rule change in the UI, you can go to the Data Modeler and hit download config. This allows you to pull your L3 through the UI which you could then place in source control. To avoid overwriting changes make sure you always pull a fresh copy of the L3 first.
Making a Match Rule Change in the Reltio 360 User Interface (UI)

Q: If an update comes through for a particular crosswalk on an existing party profile, and that crosswalk updates the Golden Record in such a way that it now matches with another party profile, does that get done dynamically now in Reltio? Say the source system accidentally entered the wrong date of birth, we come through with an update and the date of birth updated, will that trigger another match?

A: Yes, that will happen in milliseconds if it triggers an automatic match rule unless there is a big queue.  If this is a realistic concern you make the rule a potential match rule. This suggests matches, but does not merge them without human intervention. You can also turn off incremental matching if you do not want any records matching in real time.


Analyze Match Rule

Before we look at the dig into specific match rules, I recommend taking a look at the analyze match rules tool. It is great for identifying how efficient your Match Rules are. It takes a little bit of the art out but allows you to be a little more scientific in identifying where your Match Rules overlap. If two rules are generating 95 percent of the same results, there is probably not much value in having two rules with similar outcomes.

How to analyze Reltio 360 Match Rules

Q: How do I tell the effectiveness of my Match Rules based on this?

A: The results of this analysis are color coded, visually showing the outcomes, along with comments on how the rules might be improved to the right. You can find the analyze match rules tool in the data modeler, under match rules in the top right corner. It will generate a report showing which rules are good (in green), which rules have large overlap (in yellow) and which rules have problems (in blue).


Making Changes

The Data Modeler is also where you make Match Rule changes. Pick one of your entity types, and in the header navigate to Match Rules.  You can see a list of all your existing Rules. After making changes to a rule, it is best practice to rebuild the match tables. This is available in the console under Tenant Management > Jobs > Rebuild Match Table. The job recreates the tokens used to match records to one another.


Q: If you forget to rebuild, what happens?

A: Your existing data may not match on your modified rule as you might expect. As new records are loaded they will have tokens generated against your modified rule, but be compared to the old tokens of records loaded before the rule changed. 


Internal and External Matching

 In Reltio, there are two types of matching: internal and external. Let’s assume you wanted to bring on a new source. You want to see how the new records will integrate with your tenant, but don’t want to experience the potentially painful process of unmerging them. External match allows you to upload a file through an API and match your tenant data to the file data. It’s nice to see how a new source will play out before you actually load it.

Internal matching is the process of comparing and merging entities already loaded to Relto. There are currently two types (and soon to be a third type) available: Suspect, cued up for a data steward to review via a workflow; Automatic, records automatically merged and Relation, (coming soon) which creates a relationship between records rather than merging. 


Q: If there was a potential match, and an update to a birthdate made the match rule no longer true, will the potential match go away?

A: They will no longer be potential matches and it will remove them from the potential match workflow. If they have already been merged and an update comes through to one of the crosswalks, they will stay merged. We will not unmerge for you. It is a pretty important distinction. There is nothing at this time that monitors and unmerges records. 

Q: How do you differentiate between match rules? How do you know which rule was triggered?

A:Each rule has a name, which acts as an ID for the rule and a label, which is displayed in the UI. For labels, I like to list all the key attributes that are used in the rule; it will show in the UI and help data stewards understand what rule brought these together. 
Reltio 360 Match Rules and how to Differentiate between them
In the second part of this discussion, we will take a deeper look at what options are available for managing and using your Match Rules.

Learn More with the Reltio Community

The Reltio Community is a great place to learn more about how to use the Reltio products and connect with Master Data Management peers. Rely on the expertise of Reltio partners, customers, and technical experts.

Related Content: 
Introduction to the Reltio Master Data Management Profile
Reltio Master Data Management Match Rules - FAQ's Part 2
Creating Match Rules - Reltio Academy